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iProvo Revisited: Another Year and Still Struggling

April 1, 2008

This policy brief, written by Reason Foundation policy analyst Steven Titch, reexamines the fallout from Provo, UT’s failed experiment in providing municipal broadband Internet service, iProvo.

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This policy brief, written by Reason Foundation policy analyst Steven Titch, reexamines the fallout from Provo, UT’s failed experiment in providing municipal broadband Internet service, iProvo.

“iProvo was born of a myth that some sort of government broadband service was needed to ensure universal access to broadband,” Titch writes. “That it has taken more than three years to reach 10,000 users while losing $8.4 million—and is on course to lose more than $2 million for the second year in a row—testifies to the ineffectiveness of government-owned systems as a
policy for digital inclusion.”

iProvo’s real goal, digital inclusion, could have been accomplished in a much more efficient and taxpayer-friendly way,” he writes. “Fortunately for taxpayers in other cities, local lawmakers have recognized the folly of involving their government in what has become a competitive, disruptive industry.”

Author
Steven Titch is a policy analyst focusing on telecommunications, Internet and information technology. He is also a policy advisor to The Heartland Institute.
titch@experteditorial.net @stevetitch